Sunday, March 15, 2015

A Lot of Work and I am Running to Catch Up

Part 3, Week 11, March 8, 2015

I took a small bit of time off last week to do some catching up. I am working on land and water form nomenclature cards, picture folders, and book ordering. I just put in some orders for a couple of small baskets from Africa, and some coin currency from a few particular African countries. I made a very slim recipe book of dishes from Africa I thought the kids might have a prayer of being interested in trying out and I am finishing up the cultural language folders for Africa and some story booklets about life in Africa. Top that all off with a little dose of geometry booklets, a sprinkle of adjective and geography charting, and a touch of biome book ordering...and you have the end of my week last week. Notice that there was no blogging in there. So, I am doing a bit now to "catch-up."
 D finally got to our fabric box. I had purchased ours from IFIT and I was less than pleased with the contents. So, I searched through my stash and found some more suitable varied fabrics. Mine are all pinked. The fabrics that came from IFIT have a sergered edge and you can't feel the fabric all the way to the edges.

My fabrics include: poly fleece, leno linen, heavy woven linen, synthetic double stretch knit, duck canvas (unwashed) and cotton seersucker. They are all very different textures and weights. The fabrics that came with the set, were too similar in weight and texture. As D gets better at this lesson, I'll use some of the original fabrics to switch things up a bit.
 He can match them blindfolded. 
But he prefers to match them and organize them with the use of sight.
D has already done the touch tablets here and here, but this time I pulled out the two additional pairs that round out the set of five pairs in the rough gradation set. (There is a smoother gradation set too. Click on the links above for more information on this sensorial work.)

He is still working to match pairs and then we will move onto grading a single set from roughest to smoothest. Usually this work is done without the use of sight and you are usually matching the touch boards by feeling them, not by the color coded stickers on the back.

Then D and I sat down to read about book about Tito Puente. I originally picked up this book because I was looking for stories about different North American cultural topics. I saw this one, it was about music, it was about being Spanish American, and thought it could be a good one.

Maybe your child will like this read. I did. D wasn't all that interested. The book has English and Spanish text side-by-side about his life growing up as a child and how he formed his own orchestra. We watched some videos of Tito Puente and Celia Cruz, and the kids were all less than impressed. I guess they wouldn't be going salsa dancing any time in the near future. 
S lay down on the floor to read The Pot That Juan Made.
S is still working on her stamp game division. I just finished putting together a new set of division cards for her to finish out the sequence. She is still working on dynamic division with two-digit divisors. 

T is getting to the end of the Squares and Cubes Notation lesson sequence. This is the paper decanomial. (I took the layout that is in the KotU album, and printed it tile style, maybe 145%? taped it together, laminated it, and then cut it out.

This is the decanomial, or the square of Pythagoras with paper pieces that represent the numerical value of all the bead cubes and rectangles T had been working with in previous lessons. Here he lays out the paper pieces in the same pattern as before. 

For the first presentation, we are supposed to organize all the little pieces in 10 different envelopes. I didn't get to do this before T got his hot little hands on this work, so he did the final "challenge" version first and created the square from a mixed-up pile of paper tiles. You can see that the squares are yellow, and that the "2" and the "10" in the first row were printed incorrectly. He figured out where the incorrect pieces were supposed to go in the layout and then took a Sharpie pen and wrote in the correct values.

This lesson is part of the early numeration sequence. We are examining multiples of numbers. Before doing this lesson we examined the concept of multiples using our bead chain and noted that each ticket displays a "multiple" value. 

Here we have begun exercise 2: common multiples including multiples of 2-digit numbers. Above, T set out multiples of 2 up to 20. 
Here he laid out the final quantity below using vertical bead bars.
Next he did the same with multiples of 3 and 4 up to 30 and 40 respectively. (In the shot above he isn't done yet.) He pointed out that there are a lot of common multiples among the quantities, but that 12 is the only multiple common to all three numbers: 2, 3, and 4. (There is an extension exercise we didn't do here and that is to explore this same concept using double-digit numbers, like multiples of 12 and 16.)
After this, T tackled the table of numbers to 100. Here he is circling all multiples of all numbers from 1 to 10 on the same paper to find common multiples. He found that some numbers are multiples in common to many numbers and other numbers are not multiples of any number. (I thought that we did this lesson last year and I blogged about last year, but I can't find the post. Anyway, we did do this lesson last year, so this is all a quick review to get to least common multiples, factors, and the algebreic peg board.)
S did a little adjective grammar. She is checking my box and apparently this one is pretty messed up. S had to make a lot of cards that were missing. I can see that this is about the time that I started re-doing all the grammar materials I had purchased from Montessori Print Shop. I wonder if the rest of the boxes will have more of the right pieces and run a bit smoother for her.

T got in on some grammar too. Here he is working on the noun classification chart. Humn. Somehow I didn't take a shot of the chart. I'll do that next week when he finishes out the work. Anyway, this is mostly dividing up nouns that are concrete and abstract, and then there are different kinds of concrete and abstract nouns. This is the first of a few different sets of classification cards. This work comes after the other noun grammar box work which primarily focuses on plural noun spellings. 
I think this was the collective and material sorting exercise. A "swarm" is an example of a collective noun. "Wool" or "copper" is an example of a material noun. Both of these nouns are considered "concrete" nouns. T wanted to see how a school could be considered a collection of things. So we watched a video about schools of fish. T also wanted to see how a swarm could be a collection of things. So we watched this crazy video about swarms of locusts in Madagascar. Yuck.

That's it for last week. See you later this week!


  1. I have to know where you bought your African coins! I bought a 1 pound world lot that covered 32 countries but not a single coin from Africa. Boo!

    1. Oh!!! sorry to hear that! I think I had read about that happening on a couple of other Montessori-type blogs and that is why I just went the more direct route, though it might be more expensive. I just went on eBay and found lots/groups of coins from the three different countries I was looking for. I made sure that they shipped from the US because I wanted to receive them quickly and they were "Buy Now" because auctions give me stress headaches. I think the largest lot I bought was maybe $8 free SH and was maybe 9 coins? So a dollar a coin is kind of expensive, but I know exactly what I am getting and I don't need to spend hours on the internet identifying what I got and that was most important to me. Just search for "coins lots from Africa" and you'll find what you need. I will warn that this way can be a little tough because you'll get a lot of hits that are for real coin collectors. I wasn't looking for valuable anything, just regular currency preferably circulated.

  2. I am so glad you posted about how you made your paper decanomial. I was horrified to realize upon reading through that section last week that the paper decanomial is not the pretty primary one I have in a box on the shelf. Horrified. Now I know what to do. Although, I don't know if I can control my printer well enough to print across pages without size differences. We'll see.

    1. I just did it in Adobe Reader. You can tile print and then adjust the size of your print out. I am sure you do this already and your computer just fights back. :) Maybe I did it 200%, now that I look at it, it looks larger than 145%. But I don't remember at this point. It is amazing what your brain forgets immediately.

  3. I am so glad you posted about how you made your paper decanomial. I was horrified to realize upon reading through that section last week that the paper decanomial is not the pretty primary one I have in a box on the shelf. Horrified. Now I know what to do. Although, I don't know if I can control my printer well enough to print across pages without size differences. We'll see.

  4. Also, likewise on the materials making. Spent more than 10 hours this weekend on word study. Even though I bought the kit laminated and cut it took that long to separate them into sets, put them into hardware drawers and label all 120+ drawers. Sheesh. I have also separated and drawered, but not drawered, our new verb conjugation work.

    1. Ugh. I was actually considering that packet since you mentioned it a bit back. With that kind of work effort involved, maybe I'll just use those hours to make the material EXACTLY the way I want it. Where would I put 120+ hardware drawers? Where are YOU putting 120+ hardware drawers? How is your re-org going? Have you started yet?

    2. I've been reorganizing like crazy. I probably won't do a full "tour" until I have my new geometry materials know, the ones I haven't ordered yet. It will, however, be hard to miss the extra 160 drawers in the room :) My math shelves look REALLY empty right now because I took a lot off but didn't put anything on.